Biographical Sketches of Leading Citizens
Lawrence County Pennsylvania 1897
[p. 109] This gentleman, of whose life we now propose to give a few salient facts, interesting alike to his many friends and neighbors in Mahoningtown, his present residence, and to many throughout the county, is a wealthy contractor, whose fortune has been accumulated through his work in grading and paving. He is a splendid example of what a man may do by his own efforts, when he has the brains and energy to improve his opportunities. He was born at Bally Lane, County Kerry, Ireland, Feb. 19, 1845. He remained on the "ould sod" until his eighteenth year, and attended the parish schools. On April 4, 1863, he sailed for America, which has ever seemed the land of promise and plenty to the downtrodden inhabitants of the Emerald Isle, and landed in New York City, after a singularly long and distressing journey, of thirteen weeks and four days; they encountered at sea a severe storm with heavy head-winds and icebergs, that protracted the voyage to such an extent, that the provisions, except by the most careful husbanding, would have never lasted them till they reached port, and as it was, for the last four days the daily allowance was four crackers to each person. After landing, Mr. Scanlon found work in Brooklyn with a plumber, with whom he worked a short time, and then found employment on a farm at Somerville, N. Y. We next find him laboring on the docks, where he received $15 a week, and where he remained very nearly three months. From this he went to work in a coffee-mill in Brooklyn. He came to Pennsylvania in November of 1863, and worked first on a gravel train at East Liberty, was next in the employ of an oil company, and then became a resident of Shadyside, at which time he had $200 saved, not a very bad record for only about a year in this country. Going to Pittsburg, he worked as shipping clerk in a wholesale store for six months, and then turned his hand to gardening in the employ of Thomas Aiken and Robert Pitcairn. In 1867 he began contracting in earth work, grading, etc., in the main for railroads, although his enterprise has led him to extend his operations into many other fields of labor. For the Pennsylvania R. R., he graded from the Union depot in Pittsburg to Raub Station, from
East Liberty to Homewood, one mile at Greensburg, one mile at Latrobe, one mile at Derry, one mile at Conemaugh, and one mile at Wilmore Station. He also graded and paved one and one-fourth miles on Forbes Street, Pittsburg, and in 1895 graded and paved three streets in New Castle, and three more the following year. He now owns two valuable sand and gravel banks, a brick yard, a stone quarry, and a coal yard. As an illustration of what phenomenal success was his, we offer this true statement: when he came to America in 1863, he was without capital, but in 1869 and 1870, he had $187,000 in the bank, and $40,000 invested in real estate; few men can produce a record equal to this. Since living in Mahoningtown, he has served three years as street commissioner, and three years as a member of the borough council.
Mr. Scanlon's father was Daniel Scanlon, who was born in Bally Lane, Ireland, where he followed farming; his death took place there in 1896, when he was aged eighty-seven years; his wife did not long survive the shock of his death, but passed away three months after at the age of eighty-five years. Daniel Scanlon was a son of Daniel Scanlon, Sr., who married Margaret Moriarity. Our subject's mother, whose maiden name was Eleanor O'Shangasy, was born in parish Glenn, County Limerick, Ireland, and was a daughter of John and Mary (O'Connor) O'Shangasy.
Patrick J. Scanlon was married in SS. Peter and Paul's Church in East Lebanon, by Rev. Father J. M. Bearel, to Honora Scanlon, daughter of Edward and Mary (Barrett) Scanlon, both natives of Ireland. This happy union has resulted in ten children, as follows: Ella M., the wife of James Eagen of Youngstown, Ohio; Edward P.; Daniel; Mary, deceased; Marguerite; John, deceased; Michael; Patrick; Eugene; and Mary. The entire family are communicants of St. Mary's Catholic Church of New Castle. In politics, Mr. Scanlon is a member of the unterrified Democracy. Socially, he is a prominent member of the Society of the Sacred Heart of Jesus; the Ancient Order of Hibernians; and the Emeralds.
Mr. Scanlon is one of the best examples of a self-made man that we have had the opportunity of mentioning in the columns of this work, and it is with a feeling akin to satisfaction and pleasure that we present his portrait on a preceding page.
Biographical Sketches of Leading Citizens Lawrence County Pennsylvania
Biographical Publishing Company, Buffalo, N.Y., 1897
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Updated: 26 Apr 2001